Despite having been to India multiple times before, this adventure marked the first time I had initiated the trip as well as the first time we’d be travelling around the country as opposed to just staying with family.
Our first destination was Bangalore, a city which mixes the old and new due to its constant growth – although it doesn’t have the appeal of Delhi’s bustling chaos or Rajasthan’s monuments and culture, it’s easily the easiest city for westerners to live in and there are some beautiful places to see and experience.
Tipu Sultan’s summer palace in Chamrajpet, Bangalore is where the 18th century Mughal emperor Tipu spent his summers away from Mysore. The architecture is stunning and the palace also features a small gallery where you can learn more about Tipu’s rule. It’s frequented by international and local tourists alike; I met a cute little family from Darjeeling in West Bengal….they spoke absolutely no English (luckily my mum can speak Hindi) but wanted photos with me and to know where we were from (“where you from madam” ended up being my most frequently asked question in India).
After seeing the palace, we took an autorickshaw down to MTR (Mavalli Tiffin Rooms) for a spot of tiffin (a light meal). MTR is is quite clean and hygienic and serves Indian breakfast foods throughout the day – South Indian breakfasts are hands down the best; I’d recommend trying the rava idli and the plain dosa (+ both the coconut chutney and sambar which come with them are vegan).
Lal Bagh gardens are a short walk away from MTR, it’s pretty reminiscent of gardens in Sydney but good for taking a stroll and escaping the streets. I don’t think I have any good photos though as I spent most of my time there being bombarded by locals to take photos with them haha.
Other things to do in Bangalore include checking out the KR flower market, shopping on MG road, grabbing breakfast at Bramin’s coffee and sussing out cute rooftops and balconies to enjoy chai on (honestly finding pretty rooftops is one of my favourite things to do in India as a whole). Hands down the award for the best balcony in Bangalore goes to my aunt (she makes really good masala dosa too)!